Spain Franco's Remains

Gen. Francisco Franco grandson, Jaime Martínez-Bordiú, left, next to Alfonso de Borbón, center, and Daniel Martínez-Bordiú y Toledo, right, arrive at the Valley of the Fallen mausoleum near El Escorial, outskirts of Madrid, Spain, Thursday, Oct. 24, 2019. The body of dictator Gen. Francisco Franco is being exhumed Thursday from the grandiose mausoleum at the Valley of the Fallen before being transferred to a more discreet, private resting place. (AP Photo/Juan Carlos Hidalgo, Pool)

While the Spanish and international press along with many others were keen to attend the exhumation, the Spanish government insisted it would be a private affair. The plan was for 22 family members, including Franco's seven grandchildren, to be allowed inside the mausoleum but just two would witness the exhumation along with Spanish Justice Minister Dolores Delgado and a handful of officials.

Relatives will then carry the coffin with Franco's body through the mausoleum for some 300 meters before exiting onto a square where the cameras of Spain's national television channel will broadcast its placing in a hearse that will bring it to one of two waiting helicopters. If weather conditions do not permit safe flying, the hearse will continue the journey by road under heavy security.

Once at the Mingorrubio cemetery, there will be a private service held at the family crypt, conducted by two priests chosen by Franco's descendants. One of them is Ramon Tejero, son of a Spanish Civil Guard colonel who attempted a coup d'état in 1981.

The media will be able to gather outside, where Franco supporters have called for protests.

Spain Franco's Remains

People carrying a banner reading in Spanish "Franco is alive" and holding a pre-constitutional Spanish flag stand outside the Fallen mausoleum near El Escorial, outskirts of Madrid, Thursday, Oct. 24, 2019. Forty-four years after his demise, the remains of Spanish dictator Gen. Francisco are to be dug out of his grandiose resting place outside Madrid and taken to a small family crypt, finally satisfying a long-standing demand of his victims' relatives and others who suffered under his regime. (AP Photo/Paul White)

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